Read an excerpt of The Devil Orders Takeout a #mystery #thriller from @billbrier #giveaway

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THE DEVIL ORDERS TAKEOUT

Author: Bill A. Brier

Genre: Mystery/Thriller

Synopsis

A tax attorney with integrity…a powerful mobster determined to bend his will…

Grayson Bolt isn’t about to compromise his integrity to help a notorious crime boss escape the cross-hairs of the IRS. But there’s a steep price to pay for defying The Man–Grayson’s beloved wife and older son.

There’s only one way for Grayson to prevent his younger son, Jim, an innocent golf prodigy, from also being taken out: play a dangerous game of cat and mouse. And what will Jim be forced to do when the woman he loves gets ensnarled in a web of betrayal and deceit?

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EXCERPT

 “I’m afraid you’re going to get it hard, Mr. Bolt.” Costanzo had that fatherly tone of this will hurt me more than you. “Did you ever stop to think that there’s only one way of being dead, but many ways of dying?”

Grayson felt something cold touch his spine, all the way down. “I don’t follow.”

“Take your man Stockard. He killed two of your beloved family members, wife and eldest son. Isn’t that right?”

A strangling tightness gripped Grayson’s throat. “That— that’s right.”

“Wouldn’t you say a part of you died too?”

“What’s your point?” Grayson’s voice erupted in suppressed panic.

“You don’t have to die to feel dead. I’m going to kill your other son. That’ll be your punishment.”

The blood drained from Grayson’s face. Just like that. Most people held the basic principle that no man should be punished for the deed of another. Costanzo was not one of them. Grayson would be cut right to the bone, and his son would be the sharpest knife Costanzo could use. Costanzo had spelled out the thought in invisible brushstrokes. It was there and Grayson had tried not to see it.

 About the Author

MediaKit_AuthorPhoto_TheDevilOrdersTakeout

Bill grew up in California and went to Hollywood High School, then served in the Air Force as a combat cameraman.

After hiring on at Disney Studios as a film loader, he soon advanced and moved on to other film studios.

He earned a master’s degree in psychology. A big help when working with Trumpish Hollywood producers. You’re fired!

During his more than twenty-five years in the movie business as a cameraman, film editor, and general manager, Bill worked on everything from the hilarious, The Love Bug, to the creepy, The Exorcist, to the far out, Star Trek and Battle Star Galactica.

Eight years ago, Bill switched from reading scripts to writing thriller/mysteries and driving racecars. After completing three award-winning novels, he signed with Black Opal Books. His first novel, The Devil Orders Takeout, is about a devoted father and husband who makes a deal with a real-life devil to protect his golf-prodigy son after his wife and older son are killed in a mysterious accident — and pays hell for it.

Bill’s second mystery, The Killer Who Hated Soup, is Book One in the 1950s The Killer Who series, and it launches this Summer. The Internet? Never heard of it. Smart phones? Who you kiddin’?

Energetic and eager to make his mark on what Time magazine called the next great boom town, Bucky Ontario leaves his daddy and little sister in Louisiana and rides a bus to Defiance, Oklahoma, a town not particularly adverse to murders, just the embarrassment of them when committed by high officials.

Book Two, The Killer who Wasn’t There, will be on bookshelves this fall.

Bill writes every day and golfs infrequently (that damn right knee!). His five children and eight grandchildren keep him busy going to birthday parties, and he never misses a one!

The Brier Patch is Bill’s wildly entertaining blog about his shameless early days in Hollywood. It’s on his website, billbrier.com, along with a contest linked to The Devil Orders Takeout, which will award the grand prizewinner $1,000.

Bill is a member of Mystery Writers of America.

Read Bill’s USA Today revealing interview

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Read an excerpt of The Quiet Type, a #thriller from @SummerPrescott1 #giveaway @RABTBookTours

TheQuietType

Title: The Quite Type

Author: Summer Prescott

Genre: Thriller

Date Published:  April 18, 2017

Synopsis

 Tim and Susannah have ordinary lives on the surface, he’s a mortician for whom death is a serious business, and she’s a chef who really knows her way around a knife, but if the neighbors in their small Midwestern town knew of her dark hobby, they’d run for the hills.

Raised by an apathetic mother and a cruel father, Susannah was bullied and pushed to her breaking point long before she met mild-mannered Tim, and has learned to channel her murderous impulses into a strange form of art, which keeps her clueless husband safe…for now.

As strange events occur, and Susannah’s eccentric behavior becomes more dynamic, Tim starts to wonder about his wife. Will he be too perceptive for his own good?

This twisted, psychological, serial killer thriller will sear your psyche and rattle your soul, so buckle up, you’re in for a terrifying ride.

CONTENT WARNING: If you are a reader of Summer Prescott’s Cozy Mysteries, please be advised that this book depicts the actions and mindset of a serial killer, contains some adult language and adult circumstances.

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Excerpt

Chapter One: Susannah

Susannah Guntzelman was invisible. Not in the traditional sense of the word, of course, but in the far more painful translation where all of humanity simply failed to notice her existence. She’d been overlooked and unnoticed her entire life, whether at home, by parents who worked too hard to care, or in public, where strangers merely saw a plain, overweight girl, if they saw her at all. Today was no different, as she shuffled to class in last year’s jeans and sensible shoes, her mass of dry, frizzy hair carelessly piled atop her head in an unruly bun.

Being invisible had its advantages of course. It allowed her to get through nearly every day of her dreary existence without having to interact with other human beings. Teachers never called on her, no one said hello when they passed her in the hall, and she sat alone during every unending lunch hour, methodically eating the interesting assortment of foods that she’d stuffed into her bright blue insulated lunch pack. The bag was an intrusive spark of color in her otherwise beige existence. She hated it, but her mother, Greta, the long-legged, perfect-haired china doll who loved her job more than her daughter, had said that the store didn’t have any black or grey ones, so she would ‘just have to deal with it.’

Susannah trailed behind a gaggle of giggling girls, entering the calculus classroom with perhaps less trepidation than the twittering twats in front of her. She was good at math, it came easily to her, and the teacher seemed to know that she might just spiral into a panic attack if she were forced to participate in a way other than quickly scribbling out correct answers and turning them in. Math was orderly. She liked things to be orderly. She was glad, for the teacher’s sake, that he somehow understood her need for invisibility.

Early parent/teacher conferences had pegged little Susie as an angry child who didn’t get along with others, which led to wretched things. The punishments at home for bad reports were worse than the punishments at school, so she’d learned to keep her seething resentment to herself. She’d kept it to herself for so long, in fact, that she’d grown numb emotionally. Even when battered and taunted mercilessly by thoughtless and cruel classmates, she compressed her mouth into a thin line and kept her head down, waiting until she got home to pick the spitwads from her colorless and tangled hair, and to dab a cold cloth on the welts made by well-aimed rubber bands.

At home, she taught herself to withhold tears from the monster who tried his best to encourage them. When she was stripped naked and whipped with kitchen utensils, belts, shoes, or any other handy device, when she was locked into the chicken coop for days at a time, not even allowed to sleep in her bed or relieve herself in private, and even when she was denied food after the beast who spawned her poked at her soft, white flesh, declaring her to be a fat pig, she’d bite the inside of her cheeks, dig her nails into her palms, or even hold her breath if necessary…but she Would. Not. Cry.

Her goal was simple, wait for the herd of cattle to get out of her way, and get to her seat without bringing any attention to herself. She’d had a rough morning at home, and her nerves were sprinkling dark sparks into her psyche. Susannah was more than ready to immerse herself in the orderly realm of math, glorious math. So focused was she on getting to her seat, that she never saw the furtive foot, encased in an expensive running shoe, darting out like the tongue of a serpent, tripping her.

Arms full of books, the gawky teen hit the ground hard, her head knocking against the metal leg of a desk. There were a few gasps, and more than a few giggles, and when Susannah turned over, stunned, still clutching her books, the concerned frown of Mr. Davis loomed over her.

“Susannah…are you okay? What happened here?” he asked, the cuff of his polyester pants brushing against her arm.

She sat up slowly, dazed, a trickle of defiantly crimson blood running down her forehead, and over the soft round of her cheek. Her heavy glasses were askew, and she pushed them up absently, horrified that every eye in the class was upon her. She flushed bright red from the base of her neck to the roots of her hair, as she heard the guffaws and soft pig sounds of her classmates. Humiliation was an overwhelming emotion that couldn’t be stopped, even with years of conditioning. It slammed into her with brute force, threatening to steal the very breath from her lungs. Her head throbbed with it, her mouth turned to cotton, and beads of sweat sprung out on her forehead as she worked to control the tremors which rippled through her. It took her a couple of tries, while the teacher blathered on with his concern and his questions, asking if she needed to go to the nurse, but she rolled herself onto her knees, and leaning on the desk that had struck her, she rose shakily to her feet.

Debbie Moran. Smug, snooty, Debbie Moran was smirking at her, enjoying the result of her sly move. Until this moment, Susannah hadn’t loathed her more than any of the other simpering American princesses who glided through the halls as though their nimble feet didn’t even touch the chipped linoleum, but now…it was different. Now, dainty little Debbie Moran made something dark rise up inside Susannah the Sow, as her classmates called her, something darker than the judgmental little bitch was prepared to deal with. So dark that it made her heart pound. So dark that it made her mouth water. Soon, Debbie Moran, soon.

Susannah lumbered from the classroom, with Mr. Davis saying something about it being good that she was going to the nurse, but once out of his sight, she bypassed the office and walked out of the school unchallenged, breathing hard, but not from exertion. She huffed and puffed as she walked, striding fast and far as she made her plans, the need for order and justice in her world burning like a hot coal within her.

Teeth clenched, hair blowing in the chill autumn breeze, Susannah swiped absently at the tickle on her cheek, fascinated when she saw blood smeared on her fingers. She turned her hand this way and that, focused on the blood – the rude red color of it. The blood made her think, the blood made her feel, the blood made her hunger. She brought her fingers to her mouth, sucking the crimson liquid in, the metallic blast of it invigorating her. She licked and sucked her fingers until every last trace was gone, and surveyed her pale hand with a slight smile playing about her lips. Soon, Debbie Moran, soon.

**

Susannah Guntzelman was not a joiner. Participation in school activities was just not something that she did…ever, but when the Student Athletics Association put up a flyer saying that they needed servers for the State Finals Pancake Breakfast, she jumped at the chance. The breakfast was scheduled for mid-November, just before Thanksgiving, so she had just over a month to put her plan into action. She would assimilate…briefly, because it was necessary.

Food was Susannah’s solace, and often times her only pleasure. It didn’t merely provide her with sustenance, it provided her with an outlet for her sometimes odd creativity. She was usually able to grab a hasty breakfast before her father woke up, although, if she wasn’t quite fast enough, he would see her at the table eating, pick up her cereal bowl and dump its contents into the sink. Dinner at the Guntzelman house was a tense affair, where the beast measured every spoonful that was placed on her plate and watched her like a hawk so that she didn’t take seconds. But lunch…lunch was Susannah’s salvation. She would prepare her noon feast at night, after her father went to bed, and stash it in a cooler in her closet. Experimenting with all sorts of delicious combinations from the refrigerator and pantry, she gorged herself on her creations as she sat in her lonely corner of the lunchroom.

The high school offered cooking classes, and she took every single one, so it seemed quite natural when she volunteered to help out with the athletic club’s breakfast, despite her extreme aversion to social situations. She prepared for the event by doing things that she had to do to fit in. Her plan would require some degree of trust from her fellow volunteers, which she knew she’d never obtain by skulking around, sharing her thoughts with no one.

For the first time in Susannah’s life, she paid attention to her hair, finding that, when she conditioned it with avocado, it fell into smooth, bouncy ringlets. The determined young lady also went on a strict diet, much to her father’s grim satisfaction, and started working out in the beast’s basement gym after school, taking great care to wipe down his equipment afterwards, to spare the wrath that would inevitably come if he knew that she had touched something that belonged to him.

Pounds melted away, revealing a figure that prompted more than one double-take from the boys who passed her in the hall. Susannah’s overall appearance had changed dramatically in a matter of weeks, and she’d gone to a local thrift store in order to finish off her assimilation process by purchasing snug-fitting stylish jeans, low-cut tops like the other girls wore, and shoes that were the polar opposites of her sensible oxfords. Between classes, she pilfered makeup, a curling iron and hair products from gym lockers, and spent hours in front of her mirror at home, teaching herself how to use them. Her mother would have been pleased to see the changes, if she hadn’t been too busy to notice.

**

The morning of the athletic club breakfast dawned, cheery and bright, matching Susannah’s disposition. She had waited and planned for weeks, and finally, the day had arrived. She dressed with extra care on that lovely morning, wearing a flattering outfit that would help her fit in with her peers until the deed was done. Once her revenge had been exacted without mercy, she could go back to being comfortable and fading into the woodwork socially.

Susannah checked in with Coach Nickerson in the cafeteria kitchen, noting with disdain the long looks that she was getting from people, boys in particular, who had never noticed that she lived and breathed prior to this morning. She put on a happy face however, and affected a cheerful demeanor much like the one that her mother adopted for parties and other social events. She smiled, she volunteered, she was quiet, but she was present, and she made certain that she had one of the serving positions.

Debbie Moran bounced into the cafeteria, shiny ponytail swishing, with a cluster of lesser cheerleaders surrounding her. Susannah had known that her royal bitchness would be there with bells on, to accept what was rightfully hers. All of the high school elite had come out to be seen and appreciated by a fawning staff, and their inferior classmates. The annual breakfast practically existed to remind the lesser beings that they were fortunate to be allowed to attend the same institution of learning as these tanned, immaculate demi-gods.

Plating the fluffy hotcakes with care, while desperately hoping that Debbie Moran actually ate such things, Susannah loaded up a tray with several plates and delivered them to the table, setting each one down in front of the squad of debutants with a brilliant smile. Her mother would have been proud.

“Umm…helloooo,” Debbie blinked at her in utter disbelief while dangling a pitcher of warm maple syrup from two perfectly manicured fingers.

A dark scenario suddenly flashed through Susannah’s mind, culminating in gelatinous goo bubbling from the cheerleader’s eye socket after she stabbed a fork into that pretty blue orb, but she quickly quashed the thought and smiled.

“I’m sorry, is something wrong?” she asked sweetly, still savoring the brief image.

“Uh yeah,” Debbie replied, clearly offended. “This may be enough syrup for everyone else, but I’m going to need my own pitcher. Don’t be so stingy…how do you expect me to eat pancakes without enough syrup? I mean really, what would be the point?” she asked nasally, raising her eyebrows.

“Oh wow, of course,” Susannah nodded. “I feel the same way,” she smiled brightly. That part, at least, wasn’t a lie. “Sorry about that, I’ll be right back.”

When she turned to head back to the kitchen, pleased that Debbie had played right into her hands, she heard the vile creature speak in a stage whisper that was clearly meant to be overheard.

“I swear, she’s probably back there drinking the stuff,” she snickered. “Soooey, Susannah, oink, oink, oink.” The fact that Susannah had lost enough weight that her body now rivaled that of some of the cheerleaders surrounding their queen bee had apparently escaped Debbie Moran’s notice.

Feeling the heat rise in her face, Susannah concentrated on taking some deep breaths and maintaining her mother’s social façade. Her plan was almost complete. If she lost her cool now, she wouldn’t have the satisfaction of seeing things through, so she collected her thoughts, pasted a lovely smile on her face and reached under the counter when no one was looking. She’d been force-fed syrup of ipecac often enough by her father, that she knew it’s sweet taste was incredibly similar to thick maple syrup, and she had arrived early enough at the breakfast to have had time to prepare a special “syrup” just for dirty Debbie Moran, mixing in just a touch of maple syrup to mask the ipecac.

She stood in the kitchen, holding the pitcher for a moment, savoring what was about to happen, and wishing that she could film it, so that she could watch it over and over again, giggling all the while. Filming was out of the question however, for all sorts of reasons, so she’d just have to be content with having created a delightful amount of chaos and humiliation, and replaying it in her mind. She took a deep breath, and grinning broadly, she presented Debbie with her own personal pitcher of syrup, which the cheerleader poured liberally over her stack of pancakes. What happened after that would become a story that would be whispered about in the halls of the alma mater for years to come.

About the Author  

TheQuiteTypeAuthorSummerPrescottLogo

Summer Prescott is well-known in the Cozy Mystery realm, having written and published several Best-Sellers in the genre. An avid reader of Thrillers, Horror and Suspense, the author has decided to follow her passion with the debut of her Thriller, The Quiet Type, which launched in the top 50 of the Serial Killer category on Amazon. The novel has received high praise in its reviews, and Summer is considering a possible trilogy or series to continue the story.

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Spotlight on Hell Will Rise a #romanticthriller from @skyla_murphy

coverHell Will Rise

The Bloodthirst Mafia Series

Book One

Skyla Murphy

Genre: Romantic Thriller

Publisher: Skyla Murphy

Date of Publication: May 2017

ISBN: 978-0-9958306-1-5

ISBN: 978-0-9958306-2-2

Word Count: 86,400

Cover Artist: Kim Killion

Tagline: “When dawn breaks…”

Synopsis

This was never what I wanted, but fame in the mafia was what I got.

When you see numbers like I can, death becomes a constant threat. It lingers, waiting for you to make one wrong move. One falter. One fatal step out of line. The endless presence will drain you, layering you with guilt and regret. Until one day, you’re covered in blood. And in that moment, you realize… you’ve become the grim reaper yourself.

Nothing could stop me from saving my little sister. Nothing could weaken me… until my boss threw a blonde slave at my feet. Once I found out who she was, I should have wanted her dead.

But I had a bad habit of breaking the rules.

And I loved that she hated me.

Like a stupid man named Romeo, I fell for the daughter of the feuding family. Like an idiot named Juliet, she didn’t try to run.

And when I fell for the fair maiden, I shook a pair of dice. I smoked a cigarette, but she paid the final price. As I offered her a smile, my venom filled her core. I watched her drink my poison as her soul walked out the door.

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About the Author

author

Skyla Murphy is a highland junkie from West Coast, Canada. When she’s not searching the Rocky Mountains for Sasquatch, she can be found researching every other conspiracy theory known to mankind. Her Yorkshire Terrier is usually clung to her side, but he doesn’t buy into her philosophies much. Therefore, she writes about them instead.

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bewitching

Read an excerpt of The Knowing a #darkfantasy #thriller #horror from @DavidGrahamAuth

TheKnowing

Title: The Knowing

Author: David Graham

Genre: Dark Fantasy, Thriller, Horror

Published: March 2017

~ Synopsis ~

United by destiny, they must stand together to face an ancient evil…..

Ceri Edwards and two school friends lift the lid on an ancient book of recipes belonging to Betty Williams, a volunteer at the local hospital in Pontypridd, South Wales. Two Kansas City cops step off a flight at London Heathrow and one of them falls to the ground with a painful conviction that there’s something evil in the air.

United in their destinies, Ceri and the police officers are drawn into a world where prophecies are pitted against invisible forces planning to raze London to the ground and bring down the Royal Family.

It all rests with Dai Williams, recently knighted MI5 agent and reluctant hero, to bring some order to the improbable events and to ensure that afternoon tea at The Ritz continues for another hundred years.

A great cross between Kim Newman and Ben Aaranovitch and a thrill for any fan of contemporary urban horror.

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Available on NetGalley until May 15th at http://netgal.ly/TVAZfs

TheKnowingwithAuthorPhoto

~ Excerpt ~

A decent, pot-bellied, cast iron cauldron usually sold for a hundred pounds. One that was antique and appropriately fire-tarnished doubled the sum. Use by an accredited witch—specifically a member of the Dynion Mwyn tradition—could nudge that figure into the stratosphere. That was because a well-used cauldron was believed to absorb spells into the metalwork, supposedly making incantations more effective. Debunking that idea was as fruitless as rubbishing homeopathy—particularly now that Welsh folklore remedies had royal approval and were being marketed under the Cymry Originals brand, with a crest of giant leeks crossed like swords under a flying harp.

None of that was of the slightest interest to the three girls peering into the bubbling contents of the vessel. Ceri, Dilys and Bronwen liked to imagine their Celtic magick delivered with Grimm determination and lashings of David Giuntoli whom they had already accorded the title of ‘Honorary Welshman’. He would know a good potion if he saw one and would have no time for fictional fripperies like wands. They were for stupid kids who knocked themselves out walking into the wall between platforms at railway stations. Owls were cool, though, although they were far too self-important to be used as posties.

All three would-be witches were outfitted courtesy of Georgio @ Asda. ‘Gold Witch’ was an absolute steal at three pounds—if zero carat bling rocks your cwch. They had also considered the ‘Mental Patient’ blood-spattered straitjacket costume, but Bronwen’s mum was a social worker and thought the mentally ill deserved more respect than a few pence-worth of garish polyester. A gorily-streaked, plastic meat cleaver was an optional extra and she thought it was very realistic.

It was all for show, of course. They had no need of such embellishments, but it kept their mothers happy—and, hopefully, ignorant of what they were up to. The fact that Halloween—or, more accurately, All Hallows’ Eve—was just around the corner, provided the perfect smokescreen for their activities. There was always the chance Ceri’s mum might enter the room while they were in the middle of adding an eye or two of newt, so they had the music system turned up loud and playing Super Furry Animals. Actually, newt eyes were so yesterday. They’d read that modern witchery had honed the ingredients down to essences of magic which could be bought over the internet if you knew where to look. Currently, they had no internet thanks to the stupid British government, so they’d had to improvise— after tossing salt over their left shoulders, crossing their fingers and reciting a hundred Hail Marys.

Other Books by David Graham:

TheScreaming

The Screaming

Publisher: Austin Macauley Publishers

Published: July 2015

Horror, Supernatural, Thriller, Crime

~ Synopsis ~

What causes an adolescent – straight A student Brandon P Marshall – to walk downstairs naked, armed with a pair of Glocks, and go all Charles Manson on his family? This is only one in the horrifying trail of incidents that brings together Detective Sergeant Dale Franklin of the Kansas City Police Department and his poster-boy rookie, Steve Abrams. Meanwhile, across the pond, Dai Williams, in Battersea London, safe inside his improvised Faraday cage, is coming to terms with his special talents – talents that will take ‘getting-into-the-mind-of-the-killer’ to a whole new level. Al-Qaeda? Drugs Cartels? Internet freaks? David Graham’s The Screaming leaves no possibility untouched as Dai enters a bizarre and horrifying world where kids scream.

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~ About the Author ~

TheKnowingAuthorDavidGraham

David Graham lives in an ostensibly carbon zero house in rural Kent with his partner and cat amidst fields of maize and poly-tunnels of strawberries. Previously, he lived and worked in London as a consultant in the National Health Sservice. His previous non-fiction titles include: Medical Computing and Applications, Creative Sound and Computer-Assisted Medical Learning: Clinical Anatomy. David turned his attention to writing fiction in 2012. Since then, he has written one self-published novel (Looks Could Kill) and two traditionally published novels (Captive and Wet & Wild) under the name David Ellis. Looks Could Kill was in the Amazon Kindle Top 10 of spy thrillers and was downloaded more than 3,000 times. Captive was nominated for a Lambda Literary Award. He has also written two romance novellas under the name Richard Longfellow. His horror thriller The Screaming was published by Frostbite Publishing in the US in 2014, and by Austin Macauley in the UK in 2015. His new book The Knowing is the sequel to The Screaming and is due to be published early 2017 by Urbane Publications.

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Spotlight on Uncorking a Lie #cozymystery from @NadinesNotes #Giveaway

UNCORKING-A-LIE

Title: Uncorking A Lie (A Sommelier Mystery)

Author: Nadine Nettmann

Genre: Cozy Mystery

Published: May 8, 2017

Publisher: Midnight Link

Paperback: 240 pages

~ Synopsis ~

It was the kind of invitation Katie Stillwell had only dreamed about: a dinner party at the Sonoma mansion of famed wine collector Paul Rafferty to celebrate a rare bottle of wine. Everyone enjoys drinking the $19,000 wine, but Katie realizes it’s not the older vintage listed on the label. When she confides in Mr. Rafferty, he asks her to investigate, and she soon discovers the deception goes beyond money. As Katie falls deeper into the world of counterfeit wine, she learns everything is at stake—even her life.

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What readers are saying ~

I was not surprised to learn that the author herself is a certified sommelier. Her knowledge of wines and wineries is extensive, which comes through in the writing of the book, and makes it that much more interesting. ~Book Babble

~ About the Author ~

NADINE-NETTMANN

Nadine Nettmann, a Certified Sommelier through the Court of Master Sommeliers, is always on the lookout for great wines and the stories behind them. She has traveled to wine regions around the world including Chile, South Africa, Spain, Germany, and every region in France. When she’s not visiting wine regions or dreaming up new mysteries, her travel articles have appeared in AAA Hawaii, New Mexico Journey, Modern Luxury Hawaii, and Inspirato. Nadine is a member of Mystery Writers of America, Sisters in Crime, Romance Writers of America, and International Thriller Writers. She lives in California with her husband.

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Win a Print Copy Uncorking A Lie by Nadine Nettmann (U.S. ONLY)

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Read an excerpt of Rebel Custody, a new #contemporaryromance from @SarahRHawthorne #Giveaway

In REBEL CUSTODY, Skeeter is a man used to breaking the rules while Miriam is always on the right side of the law. When Miriam agrees to pose as Skeeter’s woman to get details they need for a case the lines between business and pleasure begin to blur. Golden Heart Finalist, Sarah Hawthorne returns to her Demon Horde series with this sinfully hot must read from Carina Press!

cover

Title: Rebel Custody

Author: Sarah Hawthorne

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Release Date: May 1, 2017

Publisher: Carina Press

Series: Demon Horde, MC #2

Format: Digital eBook

ASIN: B01MUG1G4V

Synopsis

A son in danger

The Demon Horde MC are no strangers to breaking the rules, but making a man pay to get his son back crosses one too many lines for Skeeter. He’ll do anything, including play by the book, if it means bringing his son home. Hiring straitlaced attorney Miriam Englestein is meant to solve his problems, not create new ones. One look at her and his good-guy facade goes out the window. He wants to throw his buttoned-up lawyer onto the back of his bike and make her his.

A woman at risk

Miri wants nothing to do with the club. Her father may be in their pocket, but she’s on the right side of the law and she intends to stay there. But there’s something about Skeeter’s plea—something about him—she can’t walk away from. While she’s tempted to let him do unspeakably wicked and delicious things to her, she can’t risk her law practice, or her heart.

A dangerous deception

When Miriam agrees to pose as Skeeter’s woman to get details they need for the case, things heat up fast—and it’s not long before the lines between business and personal blur, and they’re both in over their heads. In the MC world, lies have a way of coming back to you, and they put everyone at risk.

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Look for Outlaw Ride (Demon Horde #3) releasing in September 2017 with Carina Press! And be sure to pick up your copy of Enfocer’s Price (Demon Horde #1), available today!

enforcers pride cover 

 Title: Enforcer’s Price

Author: Sarah Hawthorne

Publisher: Carina Press

Series: Demon Horde #1

Release Date: February 6, 2017

Genre: Contemporary Romance

ISBN: 9781488024412

A man looking for redemption

Colt spent eight months in prison for trusting the wrong woman, nearly bringing down his entire motorcycle club in the process. Now he needs to fix the MC’s cash flow problems or watch the only family he’s ever known fall apart.

Meeting Krista wasn’t part of his mission.

Falling for her could mean his destruction.

A single mom trying to get by

Krista was ready to leave hooking behind when her ex cleaned out her bank account. Stuck working to provide for her daughter, she protects herself with one rule: never get involved with someone at the club.

Not that she wants to. Sex has become a job, a means to an end.

One night together as an escape

Krista’s body wakes at Colt’s touch, allowing her to imagine a life after the MC. A future. A happily-ever-after, if only briefly. Krista brings out feelings in Colt he forgot could exist. But just as he begins to trust again, Krista’s truth is revealed – testing the very boundaries of Colt’s jealousy and faith.

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Praise for Enforcer’s Price:

“I’ve been looking forward to Enforcer’s Price since the moment I learned the premise, and I’m happy to say that this debut novel by Sarah Hawthorne doesn’t disappoint. Edgy and real, Enforcer’s Price grabs at your heart and doesn’t let go!”J. Kenner/Julie Kenner, New York Times & #1 International bestselling author

“I loved Enforcer’s Price. It’s a wild ride showing the gritty side of love in an MC.” Jade Chandler, author of the Jericho Brotherhood series

“Enforcer’s Pride is a wild ride. It gets you in the feels and keeps going. It’s a dark and gritty MC romance, and I can’t wait for more.” Jade Chandler, author of the Jericho Brotherhood series

“Enforcer’s Price is a sexy romance with spicy, cagey, and memorable characters who need to make the right choices this time around or forfeit everything. The plot is believable and has intense moments that leave the reader breathless. Hawthorne writes with passion and honesty.”Romantic Times

Excerpt from Rebel Custody:

 Chapter One

 Skeeter

I liked to keep my back to the wall. It was a habit I developed in the Registan Desert. But tonight I was just in a neighborhood hangout, a strip club called Jiggles. I surveyed the strip club from a corner near the pool tables. A woman danced onstage while a rock song played. The booming bass had a slight buzz. The strip club’s sound system had blown a few speakers last year, but no one bothered to replace them.

When it was my turn, I leaned across the green felt. Bank shot. Three ball into the corner pocket. I closed my eyes and let the cue slide through my fingers. The balls cracked together. I heard the thump off the side cushion and then the rattle as the ball sank into the pocket. Easy.

I opened my eyes to set up my next shot.

“Hey, genius.” Clint laughed. “You’re stripes. Thanks for taking care of one of my balls, though.”

Fuck. I looked at the table. He was right; I was stripes. I hadn’t been paying attention. Instead of returning to my favorite spot against the wall, I sat on a stool in front of the bar.

“Hi, baby.” Asia, one of my favorite pay-to-play hookups, leaned in close. “I’d be happy to take care of your balls, but how about you buy me a drink first?”

I rolled my eyes and asked the bartender to get her a beer.

Asia pouted. “You haven’t called me in weeks.” She stuck her lower lip out. “I could call a friend, and the three of us could have our own personal party. Remember how fun it was that time?”

Tempting. Asia was always enthusiastic and willing to please in bed, especially if it would earn her a big tip.

“Actually, I don’t really remember much of that night.” I sipped on my beer. “I haven’t been in the mood lately.”

“Oh!” She smiled and started to root through her huge purse. “I got stuff for that.”

I put my hand on her shoulder. “That’s not what I meant. I’m just not interested, okay?”

What the hell was wrong with me? Asia was tall with long legs that she could bend any which way I wanted. And her fees were reasonable. But sex had just lost its thrill. It was the same old shit. Women in skimpy outfits trying to entice me to buy, which I often did. Then a meaningless meet-up in my room at the clubhouse and a morning alone.

Maybe I could soften the blow. “Why don’t you go hang out with Clint?”

We both looked over at him—he was chatting up a blonde stripper in a purple dress. Asia frowned.

“Well, maybe I’ll just make a new friend tonight. Thanks.” She walked away, hips swinging. I knew she wanted me to take a good look at her ass and change my mind, but I just didn’t care.

Leaning against the bar, I finished off my beer and surveyed the room. Hanging out at a strip club every Friday night was getting tiring. The constant noise and empty flirting made me wish for a night at home, and not just a night in my room at the MC. I bought a house last year and never fucking stayed there. I was always partying. Maybe it was time to move.

I tried to catch Clint’s eye; I was thinking of making the long drive out to my place. He was still talking to the blonde, so I decided to hit the john. Strip club bathrooms were always nasty. No matter how much froufrou crap they piled in there, it was still a urinal in a titty house.

As I was zipping up, something touched the back of my neck.

Cold. Hard. Steel.

Fuck.

“Thought I’d find you here.”

The man’s thick Cajun accent brought me home, the voice vaguely familiar. My father’s face floated in my head before I remembered the fucking gun pressed to my neck.

“I know you?” I started to turn to see who this fucker was.

He cocked the hammer. I froze. It’s a distinctive click, and when it’s pressed below your ear, it’s real fucking loud.

“Well, then put away the gun and we’ll go get a beer.” The barrel pressing into my neck eased off, and I heard him release the hammer. “I’m turning around now,” I told him.

Holding the pistol was Davide Lavernge. A year or two behind me in school, he had been a class clown who dealt a little weed on the side.

“How ’bout dat drink?” He grinned.

Davide followed me over to the bar, and we ordered a round. I sucked on my beer and studied the piece of shit next to me. His sour breath wafted over from two bar stools away. He smelled like crawfish three days after the boil.

Davide licked the salt off his lips and combed peanut shells out of his beard. His face was lined and weathered, his teeth yellow. He was no longer the happy-go-lucky guy I used to know.

“Tacoma, Washington, is damn far from Breaux Bridge, Louisiana. What’re you doing this far north, Davide?”

He put down the beer I had paid for and turned toward me. “I’m here about child support.”

He must be in a shit ton of trouble if he was coming to me for help. I shrugged. “How much do you owe?”

He shook his head. “You owe me, Skeeter. Forty large. I been taking care of your kid.”

The world went fuzzy, so I blinked. Again. My vision was clear, but my brain didn’t quite understand what Davide had just said.

Embrasse moit chew.” Kiss my ass. I pushed back from the bar. “I haven’t been back to Breaux Bridge in years. I don’t got no kid.”

Davide scratched at his beard. “After you joined the Army, Delphie realized she was pregnant. She decided she wanted to raise it on her own. That’s why she dumped you.”

Delphie. My first love. We had been nineteen and full of dreams. Well, I was full of dreams, and she was full of meth, weed, whatever else she could get her hands on. I put a tiny ring on her finger and then packed up for boot camp. The letter came two days after I arrived in Afghanistan. Classic Dear John. I read it in my bunk and then had to find a private place to fucking punch something. A captain saw me, and I spent the next three weeks cleaning latrines in the Registan Desert.

I narrowed my eyes. I wasn’t about to fall for his line of shit. “She never told me she was pregnant.”

“Don’t matter. You got a kid that you ain’t never paid child support for. So, by my accounting, you owe me forty Gs.” Davide shrugged and stuffed more peanuts in his mouth.

I rolled my eyes. That’s what this was about. “This is a goddamn shakedown. If there was a kid, Delphie would be serving me with papers. You’re bullshitting me, and you fucking know it.”

Davide stared at me, cold, hard. This was not the man I used to know. Back then he sold a little weed and raised a lot of hell. He was always quick to laugh, the life of the boil. Whatever he was into now had changed him.

“Delphie overdosed about six years ago. Don’t matter, though. You got a fucking kid, and I want my fucking money. Once you get that through your head, call me. Else I’ll come find you again. I promise you that.” He handed me an old-fashioned matchbook with the name of a dive motel and a cell phone number scrawled in pencil. “Kid is here with me.”

Davide got up and left me with the tab.

The matchbook was blue with a red stylized horse. Cowboy Motel. Printed on the back was a map. It was just off the highway, south of town, in the middle of a bunch of apple orchards. Tourists would drive right on by and find a room in Seattle or Tacoma. This place was meant only for truckers or the kind of people who didn’t like to deal with society. The kind of people who would blackmail someone for child support for a kid that didn’t exist.

This was just another way for the Lavernge family to screw me over. Delphie had dumped me as soon as deeper pockets had come along, and now Davide was trying to milk me for all I was worth. I had enough to make ends meet, but forty grand wasn’t sitting in my back pocket for a rainy day.

I ran my thumb over the top of the matchbook and felt ridges. In the light of the bar, I could just make out indentations from a pen. Something was written on the inside. I flipped open the damn matchbook and saw a drawing. There wasn’t much room, but someone had drawn a sun with sunglasses. The rays of the sun weren’t quite even, and the lines all wobbled. A kid had drawn it.

What if I did have a kid? What if Delphie had been pregnant when I shipped out? I did some quick calculations. The kid would be nine or ten. I thought of myself at that age, all skinned knees and dirty hands. If I had a kid, what would he or she be like?

I flipped the matchbook over and stared at the map printed on the back. Same shitty location, right off the interstate. Davide was pretty desperate if he’d come all the way up here to Washington State hoping to get a lot of cash. I didn’t know what Davide was mixed up in, but it was bad, and no child should be caught up in it.

I paid my tab and went to find Clint at the pool table. If this was blackmail, I was gonna need reinforcements.

* * *

An hour later me and Rip and Clint cut our engines and parked in a field behind the motel. It was easy to track down which room belonged to Davide. There was a beat-up blue truck with Louisiana plates parked at the far end, as far away as possible from the motel office and the security camera.

So we crouched with ivy up to our goddamn shoulders and waited. The lights flickered in the room, like someone was watching television.

“Shit, Skeeter, it’s been forty-five minutes,” Clint muttered in our ivy hole.

A sliver of light shone in the dark motel as someone opened their door. It was a woman coming out for a smoke. She collapsed into a plastic patio chair and lit up a joint. Too short to be Delphie, dark hair. Craggy face. Torn jean shorts. Maybe Davide’s girlfriend? Under the hyperfocus of the binoculars, she looked worn.

Then Davide came out and sat in the other chair. They passed a joint back and forth. The door opened again and showed a small, dark figure. With the bright light of the inside of the room, the person’s features were in shadow. The shadow only went a foot or so past the doorknob. A kid

My heart leaped up into my throat. I tried to breathe, but it just came out as a guttural sound. Even though I couldn’t see the kid clearly, I knew. It was like a brush stroke inside my brain that spread truth. Davide hadn’t come all the way across the country just to shake me down. He was telling the truth.

Holy shit.

I had a kid.

Copyright © Rebel 2017 Rebel Custody by Sarah Hawthorne

About Sarah Hawthorne

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Sarah Hawthorne lives in the Pacific Northwest and drinks coffee in the winter and champagne in the summer. She enjoys writing, gardening and planning vacations. Please visit Sarah at http://www.sarahhawthorne.com.

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Read an excerpt of the #EroticRomance Chosen Path from J. Whitney Williams #giveaway

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Title: Chosen Path

Author: J. Whitney Williams

Genre: Erotic Romance

Published: 4/28/2017

~ Synopsis ~

Yumiko Itsumoto wants it all. An accomplished artist and feared attorney, she gets what she wants, all else be damned. Now she wants love, even if it means charting a new course for her life, but changing course can be dangerous. In mere moments, she tumbles from the dizzying pinnacle of success into a bottomless abyss of murder and treachery. Yumiko will not live happily ever after—not this time—but can she at least find a way to stay alive?

Editor’s review 

Author J. Whitney Williams follows CARRIED AWAY—his surprisingly intelligent and deftly written debut—with a story that is even sexier, more thrilling and more enthralling than the first.

Again taking the reader on a trip across the world, meeting strange people in strange places via a prodigious narrator, CHOSEN PATH follows Yumi, a powerful and apparently dispassionate supporting character introduced in book one. But appearances deceive. Here, the reader is immersed in Yumi—into the very depths of her complex mind, her conflicted yet determined soul, her insatiable sex drive.

When Yumi encounters the woman who she presumes to be the fiancée of the love of her life—perhaps her only true love—she has every reason to seize the opportunity that presents itself to erase the woman from both of their lives forever. It’s no wonder Yumi is the prime suspect for the unfortunate woman’s swift and seemingly heartless murder. Unable to recall herself, Yumi assumes the worst, too. It wouldn’t be the first tragic fate to befall someone who stood in her way—or the last—and cameras don’t lie.

In CHOSEN PATH, Williams explores the very essence of what makes us human. The protagonist, a uniquely flawed yet extraordinarily likable woman of many talents and trades, demonstrates the jealousy and manipulation we see in ourselves and despise in others. At the same time, we’re drawn to Yumi. Geisha. Samurai. Assassin. Pseudo-royalty. Nothing happens to her; she creates. If we all shaped our own circumstances, our destinies, as adroitly as she, what paths would we choose and where would they lead us?

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~ Excerpt ~

At the most elegant teahouse in Gion Kobu, Matron Kazaharu lowered a teacup from her ageless face.

“Willow-sensei.” Miharu-chan’s whisper crept over her shoulder. “A man in a cheap suit just asked—”

Matron Kazaharu—Willow-sensei, as the students called her—did not need to hear the rest. “It breaks my heart, Ambassador, that I am called away. I must beg your forgiveness and your leave.”

All at the table stood as she did, and the guest spoke.

“Of course, Lady Willow-Wind. It has been such a privilege to…” Blah blah blah blah blah. She had to move fast.

She had warned Emi-chan to expect the detective’s eventual return, but it seemed he had arrived while she was away. Willow could only blame herself. She scheduled Miharu as Emi’s backup. Any other woman might have discerned her gambit at first sight of him, but that poor girl would not know a man had been seduced if he engraved his name on her forehead with a diamond-tipped erection.

When Miharu refused him, he would have bolted like a spooked deer. Willow could not recall having previously chased a man, but unusual circumstances require innovative techniques.

Shimizu. He, and his story, was simple. What Willow read of him moved her. Like so many, he had married for infatuation mistaken for love, and more than a decade passed before he came to know so. His wife bore him one child, a now-adult son, to whom he had become mostly estranged. Had there been no child, the poor soul could still be married, thinking infatuation the most love one could feel.

He lost himself in his work because someone once—perhaps no more than once—told him it was important. That—his naivety—drew her attention. Even in a job that showed him the worst parts of human nature, something good and decent still lived within him. It shone from his heart like the morning star.

He was handsome, too, handsome enough to be sexy, yet sex is but a single feather. Within minutes of their first meeting, Lady Willow-Wind had decided to spread her stately wings. She would return that star to the sky.

~ About the Author ~

whitney_in_park

A mathematician by training and computer programmer by trade, J. Whitney Williams lives and works under the X in Texas, thinking too much and speaking too little.

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